Sherlock calls on Govt to progress Labour Bill to ban micoplastics in products

Seán Sherlock TD
19 February 2018

Labour TD Seán Sherlock has called on the Government to swiftly progress Labour legislation through the Dáil to ban the use of microbeads and other micro-plastics in cosmetic and personal products.

It comes as new research by NUIG has highlighted the damage caused by microplastics to fish in the Atlantic, with 73% of deep water fish surveyed ingesting plastic particles.

Deputy Sherlock said:

“Irish researchers have now produced hard evidence of the damage being caused to marine life through exposure to microplastics.

“It is particularly concerning that remote, deepwater fish, found thousands of kilometres from our shores and some 600 metres underwater, are being impacted and at this rate, it is only a matter of time before these harmful products eventually enter the human foodchain.

“We cannot afford to wait that long and allow further damage to be caused to our marine life.

“The use of microbeads in cosemetic and personal products is entirely unnecessary and any superficial benefits are completely outweighed by the harmful consequences for our marine life.

“While many Irish people already choose not to buy products that contain microbeads, we need an industry standard across the board that is backed up by legislation.

“If passed, the Labour Party’s Prohibition of Micro-Plastics Bill 2016 would make it an offence to manufacture, sell or advertise any products that use microbeads and other micro-plastics.

“Our Bill will be scrutinised by the Environment Committee next month, and I believe it is also important for the Committee to hear from the experts at NUIG, who could present this evidence that solidifies the need to progress with the Bill.

“We need to get this important legislation on the Statue Books as soon as possible to ban the use of microbeads and other micro-plastics in cosmetic and personal products; time is of the essence.”

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